Susan W
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 6:46 pm
Location: Memphis, TN

Seed starting, my way

We all have different situations, experience, needs, expectations and more when it comes to starting stuff from seed, and of course gardening in general. I can't express the appreciation for comments and suggestions from nubes to seasoned on this.

I am entering my 2nd year of selling fresh cut herbs at the farmers market. Most all are grown in containers, from 10" to big. The 10" mainly for ones that may have to be wintered inside or rolled in and out. So come warm weather few of the smaller pots. I've messed with gardening since forever, large and small. I also worked at garden centers (until 2 yrs ago) and never thought about starting from seed. We had pretty starts coming in all the time!

As the page turns, I am starting a few more from seed. No greenhouse, no big system, just doing what works for me. I use the peat pellets, 10 -12 in a small tray. I can get 3 -4 on top of frig. (there's other stuff up there including the radio) Once sprouted and needing light get shifted to another area including window sills and shelves with window and additional lights.

Once these infants are up and have real leaves usually go to a 4" pot. The dirt is mostly potting soil, using Fafards now, a bit of worm castings, and some bagged top soil. The netting on the pellet gently pulled back, some cut off, and usually 2 opposite corners put in pot. When it comes time to put in garden or regular container the two separate easily.

A couple of plants are direct sown into pots, and this includes nasturtium and dill. Nasturtium is a fleeting one for us, passing out in June with heat. I have to work on the dill.

The dirt make up in the larger outdoor pots is a bit different, and that is another topic!

I had some need to write this out, knowing we all have different situations.
Have fun!
Susan

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PunkRotten
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Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2011 12:48 am
Location: Monterey, CA.

I am doing a really cheap way of starting seeds. I saved a bunch of those produce containers from things like grapes and tomatoes. Sometimes they already have drainage holes in the bottom.


I put in some seed starting mix and put my seeds in. I put them on a flat where I can put water from the bottom but also I spray the top with a spray bottle. Then I left this outside day and night until they sprout. I have tomatoes just barely sprouted. I had dill, cilantro, lettuce, marigolds, yarrow, and chamomile a week ahead.


But I messed up and left them in a really sunny spot. Wouldn't of been a problem if I moved them before noon but I forgot and lots of the seedlings were burned. I was able to save the Dill, cilantro, and some Yarrow.


My peppers seedlings are just starting to come up. I am not having the best success with how I am starting seeds and I may try something else. I have an aquarium light I am not using and may test it and see how it goes. It has 2 CFL bulbs at 15 watts each I think. I also have one of those heat pads for people when they have a some aches/sores. I wonder if I could use this for seed starting.

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rainbowgardener
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Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

The heat pads like that from a pharmacy are what I use for seed starting; just set a tray on top of it. But watch out, a lot of the new ones have automatic timed cut off; you don't want that. My heat mats run 24/7 all during seed starting season - basically about Feb 1 to late April.

I'm really impressed with how over-engineered they are. Running it 24/7 for three months can't have been what they were designed for. But I've been using the same ones for more than a decade.
Last edited by rainbowgardener on Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Susan W
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Posts: 1859
Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 6:46 pm
Location: Memphis, TN

I need to revise my post. I can get the seeds to sprout, often in a few days. My glitch area is sprout to real leaves and early growth. It looks like I need to figure better heat/light for that stage, and that just for Jan-Feb. Now with a few 60+ days, I can give the basil babies day passes to play out on the south face deck. I have even put some newer sprouts out, but not sun all day. Near the house is 70+, well sunny days.
Have fun!
Susan

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